Metabolite Identified as Responsible for Weight Loss Benefits of Exercise

How exercise works.

Along with a proper diet, exercise is the golden rule when it comes to losing weight. Nutritionists and scientists now have a better understanding of how exercise signals the metabolism to demand more energy from reserved fat storage as an energy source. Exercise is full of fat burning benefits all thanks to a metabolite substance known as BAIBA.

The new study researching the BAIBA molecule was reported in the January issue of Journal Cell Metabolism. BAIBA is the acronym researchers use for beta-aminoisobutyric acid, which is a tiny molecule that is released into the bloodstream during exercise.

Multiple past studies have confirmed that exercise is associated with a number of benefits such as maintaining weight, weight loss, and reducing the chance of developing heart disease, diabetes, cancer and strokes. Exercise is important for regulating hormones that promote a sense of well-being, and it stimulates the body to maintain strong bones and muscles as we age. Although the research demonstrating the benefits of exercise is well documented, a more direct link explaining what triggers the body to complete beneficial tasks remained vague until recently.

How Exercising Sends All the Right Messages for Good Health 

They found that the muscles and organs were sending signals during exercise. The signals were distributed via the bloodstream until they came into contact with fat cells located in various areas of the body and liver. While the signals were being sent, they also discovered a protein within the muscle, called PGC-1 alpha that was working simultaneously to regulate metabolic genes.

Further research on mice revealed that BAIBA metabolites were being secreted by cells, which is a substance that increases the gene expression responsible for converting fat cells into energy that is burned by the body. This discovery helped to pinpoint more precisely how exercise helps to stabilize blood sugar and cause weight loss.

exercise physiologyHuman Research Results

Human research was completed by the Framingham Heart Study. Humans also had an increase in the BAIBA metabolite that enhanced fat cell genes during exercise. Blood analysis reflected that it stimulated the body to cause a reduction in fat molecules, insulin and blood sugar levels, and cholesterol. Overall, BAIBA played a direct role in decreasing the participants’ body mass index. Researchers are looking into further research of BAIBA to see if it can be artificially manipulated to increase weight loss in patients with metabolic disorders.

How Much Exercise Is Enough for Health Benefits?

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommends getting a minimum of 150 minutes of moderate aerobic exercise a week to lower the risk of heart disease and diabetes. Moderate aerobic exercise is safe for most people, and it is just as effective when completed in small increments while building your strength and dexterity.

You can start out slowly by taking short walks after meals. Slowly adapting to more vigorous and longer workout sessions will increase the amount of health benefits that you experience over time. People with diabetes or cardiovascular problems should consult with their physician to find out what is a safe level of activity for starting any new exercise routine that is potentially strenuous.